Uhuru: We've achieved a lot in advancing equality

President Uhuru Kenyatta speaks at the Kenya School of Government during the commemoration of International Women Day on Tuesday, March 8, 2022. [Samson Wire, Standard].

President Uhuru Kenyatta yesterday acknowledged Kenya’s strides in achieving gender equality but said a lot needs to be done.

He added that we have now achieved gender parity in both primary and secondary school levels.

‘‘Today, we are proud that every girl child has equal opportunities like boy child to enrol in school, remain there and pursue a career of her choice,’’ said Uhuru at Kenya School of Government in Nairobi while marking the International Women’s Day.

This year's theme was ‘‘Gender Equality Today for a Sustainable Tomorrow’’ with the focal point being #BreakThe Bias

He also cited achievements in universal healthcare especially in women and children including significant decline in key maternal and child health indicators including infant mortality, maturity rate and maternal mortality.

Uhuru said that another feat in women breaking the glass ceiling is having a woman Chief Justice and and that his Cabinet includes many women in top strategic positions including lands, foreign affairs, energy and defense dockets.

He also mentioned the Matrimonial Property Act 2013, Election Offences Act 2016 and Land Registration Rights as some of the legislations enacted under his tenure to advance gender equality.

‘‘However despite the above achievements, there are still outstanding systemic, structural, cultural barriers as well regional disparities to address,'' said Uhuru.

''A continuous focus on gender issues is therefore a priority to my administration and should be so even for future administration.''

Uhuru cited Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) saying it has continued to undermine the realisation of the potential of women and girls in education and it has harmful health consequences.

He said his personal commitment to rid the country off this cultural practice has made good progress.

He applauded cultural and religious leaders from Pokot, Borana and Samburu communities for their efforts in eliminating it.

On gender-based violence (GBV), he said it violates women’s basic human rights, undermines women their productivity and diminishes their self-worth.

He ordered a crackdown on all rogue boda boda operators starting in Nairobi. The order came after a video of a woman getting harassed by boda boda riders in Nairobi, appeared on Monday, on the eve of International Women’s Day.